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Traffic Offences

There are a range of traffic law offences. If you have been detected by the police for erratic driving or have been involved in an accident you might have some of the following charges: 

  • Speeding
  • Careless driving
  • Driving in a manner dangerous
  • Leaving the scene of an accident
  • Failing to render assistance
  • Failing to exchange details

Melbourne city

For each charge there are different things the police must prove before you can be found guilty. The police know this so they charge you with the offences that are easy to prove (and have smaller penalties) and they also charge you with the more serious offences which they may not be able to prove. We know what the police need to prove and will look at the evidence against you and see if they can prove any of the charges. You might be charged with five offences but we can negotiate with the police to ensure that you only plead guilty to the charges that the police can prove.

Can I go to Jail?

In rare circumstances you can. Driving in a "manner dangerous" or at a "speed dangerous" may result in a jail term. For most other traffic offences it is very rare to go to jail.

Do I have to lose my licence?

For some speeding offences and driving in a manner dangerous, yes. For most offences you do not have to lose your licence. Your personal circumstances, driving history and the circumstances of the charge before the Court will all affect whether or not you lose your licence. The Court has a general power to take your licence for this type of offence and frequently does so. We will look for a reason the Court should not take your licence.

Can I get a drive to work licence?

Unfortunately not. If the Court takes your licence away you cannot get a drive to work licence. You will have to make alternative arrangements for work, even if you depend on your licence to make a living.

Country road

What happens at Court?

If you are pleading guilty to the charge(s) then you won't need to say a word at Court. We do that for you. When it is time for your case to be heard you will be seated in the front row of the public gallery. Your Barrister will sit at the table and will speak to the Magistrate about your case. The Magistrate does not read your file before he / she comes into Court. Your Barrister will tell the Court why you were charged and will then tell the Court about all your good points – the Barrister knows what sort of things the Court is interested in.

Should I adjourn my case to get a different Magistrate?

No. In Victoria you are not allowed to "shop around" to get a different Magistrate. The Court does not allocate a Magistrate to hear your case until the night before. You and your lawyer cannot find out who the Magistrate is going to be until the morning of your case.

Some of the reasons you might seek an adjournment are:

  • To allow more time to prepare your case;
  • To obtain a character reference or report;
  • If you or your lawyer are unavailable.

Will my case get reported in the media?

This is extremely unlikely. We never talk about your case with anyone. We do not speak to the media under any circumstances. Having your case reported in the media does not help you. Having to go to Court is stressful enough without having other people know about it.

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